The Bluebook can be daunting, and I bet no one is perfect at it. Regardless, your professor will likely want you to make your sources comply with Bluebook--at least enough that a law review editor reading the paper in six months, deciding whether or not to give it a publication offer, thinks it looks good enough. You want it to at least pass as Bluebook. Additionally, you want to make sure you are giving enough information about a source so that your professor can find it easily.
As far as bluebooking goes, start with the easy, low-hanging fruit first. This page will give you some of those basics. Then, talk to a law librarian for harder sources when you are in doubt. Remember--academic research for your professor will use the white pages of the Bluebook. You likely only used the blue pages for your 1L legal research and writing course. The citations in the white pages will be different than you are used to, so please pay attention to that.
The most current version of the Bluebook is the 21st edition from 2020. You can use it in the Reserve Room in the law library or borrow a copy from Reference Services.
For the example citations below, you can look up the rule in the Bluebook to see an explanation of what each piece of the citation stands for (author, publisher, year published, page number, volume number, etc.)
1. Scholarly articles: Bluebook Rule 16
Example: Stephanie Plamondon Bair, Malleable Rationality, 79 Oʜɪᴏ Sᴛ. L.J. 17 (2018).
2. Books: Bluebook Rule 15
Example: W. Cᴏʟᴇ Dᴜʀʜᴀᴍ, Jʀ. & Bʀᴇᴛᴛ G. Sᴄʜᴀʀғғs, Lᴀᴡ ᴀɴᴅ Rᴇʟɪɢɪᴏɴ: Nᴀᴛɪᴏɴᴀʟ, Iɴᴛᴇʀɴᴀᴛɪᴏɴᴀʟ, ᴀɴᴅ Cᴏᴍᴘᴀʀᴀᴛɪᴠᴇ Pᴇʀsᴘᴇᴄᴛɪᴠᴇs (2d ed., 2019).
3. Chapter in a book written by an author who did not write the whole book (This generally means that there are no authors listed on the cover of the book, but rather have editors listed on the cover of the book.): Bluebook Rule 15.5. Bluebook calls sources like this "Shorter Works in Collection."
Example: Justin Collings, An American Perspective on the German Constitutional Court, in Tʜᴇ U.S. Sᴜᴘʀᴇᴍᴇ Cᴏᴜʀᴛ ᴀɴᴅ Cᴏɴᴛᴇᴍᴘᴏʀᴀʀʏ Cᴏɴsᴛɪᴛᴜᴛɪᴏɴᴀʟ Lᴀᴡ: Tʜᴇ Oʙᴀᴍᴀ Eʀᴀ ᴀɴᴅ Iᴛs Lᴇɢᴀᴄʏ 273 (Anna-Bettina Kaiser, Niels Petersen & Johannes Sauer eds., 2018).
4. Cases: Bluebook Rule 10
Example: McKee v. Cosby, 139 S. Ct. 675 (2019).
1. Non-consecutively paginated periodicals (articles and magazines): Bluebook Rule 16.5
Example: John W. Welch, Joseph Smith’s Iowa Quest for Legal Assistance: His Letters to Edward Johnstone and Others on Sunday, June 23, 1844, 57 BYU Sᴛᴜᴅ. Q., no. 3, 2018, at 111.
2. Forthcoming articles and books: Bluebook Rule 17.3
Example: Stephanie H. Barclay, The Historical Origins of Judicial Religious Exemptions, Nᴏᴛʀᴇ Dᴀᴍᴇ L. Rᴇᴠ. (forthcoming 2020), https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3590368.
3. Unreported cases: Bluebook Rule 10.8.1
Example: Starr v. Robinson, 1814 WL 726 (Vt. July 1814).
4. Court documents (including transcripts, briefs, and other court filings): Bluebook Rule 10.8.3
Example of a court document for a case that does not have an opinion issued yet: Brief of Petitioner-Appellant at 48, United States v. Al-Marri, No. 03-3674 (7th Cir. Nov. 12, 2003).
Example of a court document for a case that does have an opinion issued: Complaint at 17, Kelly v. Wyman, 294 F. Supp. 893 (S.D.N.Y. 1968) (No. 68 Civ. 394).
5. Book reviews: Bluebook Rule 16.7.2
Example: Kif Augustine-Adams, Book Review, 98 Hɪsᴘ. Aᴍ. Hɪsᴛ. Rᴇᴠ. 352 (2018) (reviewing S. Dᴇʙᴏʀᴀʜ Kᴀɴɢ, Tʜᴇ INS ᴏɴ ᴛʜᴇ Lɪɴᴇ: Mᴀᴋɪɴɢ Iᴍᴍɪɢʀᴀᴛɪᴏɴ Lᴀᴡ ᴏɴ ᴛʜᴇ US-Mᴇxɪᴄᴏ Bᴏʀᴅᴇʀ, 1917-1954 (2017)).
Cross-references is a feature in Microsoft Word that allows you to do cross-references internally and automatically for footnotes that Bluebook has you doing supras and infras for. This is one of the reasons why Google Docs is not very useful for preparing an article to be submitted to a law review and journal for publication.
To Add a Cross-Reference:
To Update a Cross-Reference:
 See Simon Canick, Library Services for the Self-Interested Law School: Enhancing the Visibility of Faculty Scholarship, 105 Lᴀᴡ Lɪʙʀ. J. 175, 178 n.17 (2013); Harriet Richman & Steve Windsor, Faculty Services: Librarian-Supervised Students as Research Assistants in the Law Library, 91 Lᴀᴡ Lɪʙʀ. J. 279 (1999).
 Rowena U. Compton, The Student Assistant, 23 Lᴀᴡ Lɪʙʀ. J. 24 (1930).
 Richman & Windsor, supra note 1, at 280.
 Compton, supra note 2.
When in a Microsoft Word document, the "1" and "2" in footnotes 3 and 4 will be hyperlinked to their respective footnotes 1 and 2. Additionally, if a new footnote was added at the beginning, the "1" and "2" would update to "2" and "3" once you followed the update instructions above.
BRIGHAM YOUNG UNIVERSITY
© 2012-2017+. All rights reserved. | Provo, UT 84602 | 801-422-3593